It was reported last winter that CC Sabathia lost 30 pounds simply by cutting Captain Crunch out of his diet. No, really.
Of course, anyone who watched Sabathia pitch this year — especially in the second half — could not help but notice that the Yankees’ ace was not exactly in the best shape of his life. Talking with the media after agreeing to an extension with the Yankees yesterday, CC admitted that his conditioning is something that could use some attention:
“It’s something I do regardless, and be proactive,” Sabathia said during a conference call after agreeing to a new five-year, $122 million deal with the Yankees. “I just need to go out and be healthy and try to do what I can to be up there for every start for this team. For me, that means losing weight, so that’s what I’ll do.”
That’s good to hear, because the guy is an amazing pitcher. While a lot of that mass — especially below the belt — likely helps his pitching, the gut and carrying it all around can’t be helping any. If nothing else, his stamina is probably suffering as a result.
When you’re as big as Sabathia is already, and when you have the time, money and access for trainers and dietitians and everything, losing the 30-40 pounds he likely needs to lose is a doable thing. I mean, I’m just some schmo blogger and I’ve lost 27 pounds since April simply by hopping on the basement treadmill, watching science fiction shows and saying no to that extra slice of pizza from time to time.
Good luck, CC. I’d love to write a Best Shape of His Life story about you next spring that isn’t dubious or sarcastic. I then want to be able to make fun of a bunch of those “we’ll never see a 300 game winner again” stories we’ll no doubt get when you pass the mark at the end of a long and healthy career.
The Astros avoided arbitration with pitcher Mike Fiers, agreeing on a $3.45 million salary for the 2017 season, per Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle. The right-hander was in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility.
Fiers, 31, made 30 starts and one relief appearance for the Astros in 2016. He finished the year with a 4.48 ERA and a 134/42 K/BB ratio in 168 2/3 innings.
Fiers had a much better showing in 2015 as well as in limited action in 2014, so the Astros are hoping he rediscovers that effectiveness going forward. He’ll slot into the back of the starting rotation.
There is little if any controversy to be had about the caps this year’s inductees will wear on their Hall of Fame plaques, but in case there was any doubt at all, it was put to rest this afternoon at the Hall of Fame press conference: Tim Raines will wear a Montreal Expos cap and Ivan Rodriguez will wear a Rangers cap. Jeff Bagwell, of course, never played for a team other than the Houston Astros at the big league level.
Though Raines had some good seasons with the Chicago White Sox and though he helped provide a nice kick start to the Yankees dynasty in the mid-1990s, his best seasons, by far, took place while he was an Expo. It’s also the case that the bulk of his Hall of Fame push came from Expos fans. He was particularly boosted by Jonah Keri, who recently wrote a book detailing the history of the Expos. So, yeah, that’s easy.
Rodriguez played 13 of his 21 years with the Texas Rangers, including his MVP 1999 season. He did have some notable years elsewhere, particularly in Detroit where he remains a fan favorite, but it was always going to be the Rangers for him, one would think. Maybe a slight, slight chance that he’d do the blank cap thing, Greg Maddux-style, but smart money was on the Rangers.
With Bagwell, the only question is which Astros cap he’ll wear. There are a couple of applicable ones: the brick red star, which he wore to the World Series in 2005. There’s also the shooting star cap he wore during his best seasons and which Craig Biggio’s plaque displays. He was around for the classic “H” over the star look, but he was just a kid then, so I doubt he’d wear it.
Anyway, sorry to the Marlins fans who wished that Raines and Pudge would wear the fishy-F.